Deandre Baker, J.R. Reed named to 2018 Thorpe Award Watch List
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Deandre Baker, J.R. Reed named to 2018 Thorpe Award Watch List

J.R. Reed
J.R. Reed. (Steven Colquitt/UGA)

Georgia Bulldogs senior Deandre Baker and junior J.R. Reed have been named to the 2018 Paycom Jim Thorpe Award Watch List, the Jim Thorpe Museum and Oklahoma Sports Hall of Fame (OSHOF) have announced.

The Jim Thorpe Award is an annual award presented “to the best defensive back in college football based on performance on the field, athletic ability and character.”

30-50 student-athletes are named to the list annually by a screening committee and others are added as the season progresses. Three finalists will be announced at a later date, and the winner will be selected and announced at The Home Depot College Football Awards on Thursday, Dec. 6, 2018, on ESPN.

This season, 35 student-athletes were named to the Jim Thorpe Award Watch List. Here is the breakdown by conference: AAC (3), ACC (4), Big 10 (4), Big 12 (3), C-USA (4), IND (1), MAC (2), MW (3), Pac-12 (4), SEC (4), Sun Belt (3).

Deandre Baker (5-11, 180) hails from Miami, Florida. Last season, Baker played in all 15 games and recorded 44 total tackles (30 solo, 14 assisted), three interceptions, and one sack.

J.R. Reed (6-1, 194) is a native of Frisco, Texas. Reed amassed 79 total tackles (40 solo, 39 assisted), five tackles for loss, 1.5 sacks, two interceptions, two fumble recoveries (one for a touchdown), and one forced fumble in 15 games for the Bulldogs in 2017.

Baker and Reed will lead the UGA defense as they open the 2018 season in Athens on Saturday, Sept. 1 against Austin Peay. The game is slated for 3:30pm ET on ESPN.

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